Carbuna biochar

Type of project: Biochar

In Compensate's portfolio since: 01/2023

Country: Germany

Innovative project

Carbon credits bought: 361

Biochar applied in agriculture as an additive for bedding, farmyard manure, compost or animal feed.

Project duration: Ongoing

The term biochar refers to the  stable carbon material produced from pyrolysing wood residues at high temperature without oxygen. The process locks 50% of the carbon in biomass in biochar’s solid structure. To utilize its diverse biological and technical properties, including high permanence (over 100 years), biochar should not be combusted. When used in agriculture and when planting trees, biochar enriches the soil, increases the water and nutrient storage capacity and promotes soil health by building up humus. In industrial applications, biochar serves as an absorber, makes composites conductive and can also be used as a dye. Long-term carbon storage is ensured only when biochar is applied into long-term products or agricultural land.

Aggregator for action

Carbuna supports small farmers producing biochar by purchasing the biochar or subsidizing the price of biochar with the help of the carbon market. As a result, the farmers can find buyers for the biochar easier, since they can offer it at a lower price level, thanks to the carbon credit revenues. The only requirement is that the biochar meets the highest quality standards as evidenced by the European Biochar Certificate, covering sustainability of feedstock and all emissions from the biochar production and transportation. 

Biochar is produced from untreated wood residues, nut shells or similar materials. Measuring how much carbon has been captured requires certification and consistent follow-up. For certifying the sinks, Carbuna partners with the European Biochar Certificate and with Carbonfuture for the monitoring and tracking of biochar end use. Carbuna has been actively capturing carbon and trading carbon removal credits since 2020 through the Carbonfuture, which is a carbon removal tracing platform with integrated marketplace.

Carbuna has a unique set of skills, having expertise in all main processing methods for biochar, including milling, crushing, screening, loading biochar with liquid or solid aggregates and pelletizing. Carbuna has its own laboratory and production technology as well as a large network of service providers for the processing of biochar.

Initially, the focus of Carbuna in terms of biochar application was in Agriculture and Urban Applications (city trees). This focus has expanded to applications of biochar in building materials.  In addition, Carbuna is also exploring more innovative applications e.g. in cement, green building and cold asphalt.

Benefits for farm applications

Carbuna provides various biochar products to improve conditions in farms, such as biochar bedding for improved hygiene in stables, saving on straw and as a carrier for farmyard manure. The use of biochar has been proven in several studies to increase feed efficiency, feed digestibility and animal well-being. Odor is reduced as methane, ammonia and other substances are bound to the biochar. In addition, biochar increases the fertilizing effect of manure and liquid manure, and decreases nitrate leaching on the field.

Benefits as a soil amendment

Carbuna’s biochar products for soil improvement results in stable humus development and higher water retention capacity, natural fertilization with amino acids and controlling microbiological activity. Long-term studies with Carbuna biochar used in the cultivation and harvesting of grapes for wine production show a significant increase in the yeast-usable nitrogen in favor of aroma development. The antioxidants potential of vegetables, berries and other fruits also improves. In grapes and fruit growing, the lifespan of vines and trees is also extended. The use of biochar also decreases the need for irrigation, which is an important benefit given the summer droughts experienced in Europe in recent years and which are likely to get even worse due to climate change.

Photo credit: Carbuna

Carbuna’s biochar products for soil improvement results in stable humus development and higher water retention capacity, natural fertilization with amino acids and controlling microbiological activity.

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